Perhaps if I looked through newspapers from other years I'd discover 1933 wasn't all that usual, but my hunch is the weather really did go crazy in '33, especially in regard to tornadoes and hurricanes. Winter weather also was unusually cold ... and the summer, which arrived early, set heat records. Yet, in August, there was a blizzard in Colorado.

Here's a look at some 1933 weather highlights:

January 5: A mother and child are killed, six people injured in Mammoth Canyon near Wallace, Idaho, when thousands of tons of ice, snow and rock, loosened by a thaw, roar down from the mountains in a landslide that buries four homes and an unknown number of trucks and passenger cars. One man, Lloyd Swinnerton, is carried along 400 feet by the slide, but escapes uninjured.

January 7: Chilean residents of the Southern Andes region flee to the coast in panic as a result of renewed activity of volcanoes. Llaima volcano of Temuco shoots a cloud of ashes and smoke six miles high, and the falling ashes cause heavy damage to crops. This and other eruptions kick up the heat in nearby towns, forcing inhabitants to flee.

January 10: The worst fog of the winter blankets southern England. Trains, boats, airplanes and street traffic are disrupted and there are numerous road collisions. Eighteen persons are injured in London.

January 20: Gales and gigantic seas take a toll of lives and ships on the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Four persons, including the commander, are killed on the British freighter, Exeter City. Off the California coast, a lumber ship is pounded to pieces.

January 22: Freakish weather grips the United States from the Mississippi River west, with the West Coast suffering from a violent blizzard and rainstorms. Two men freeze to death in a stalled car in the mountains near Goldfield, Nevada. Five other deaths are attributed to weather conditions.

January 28: Coastal towns and ships in the Atlantic are pounded by winds of hurricane intensity. Scores of families around Winthrop and Revere, Massachusetts, evacuate their homes.

January 29: Churned by snow-laden and rain-soaked gales for three successive days and nights, record-breaking tides litter the New England coastline with a tangled mass of wreckage, causing hundreds of families to leave their damaged or wrecked homes.

January 30: Storms continue to batter the northeast; five are killed in Nova Scotia. Out west, a blizzard traps 3,000 people at Lake Arrowhead, California, where — appropriately — a winter sports carnival is being held.


Syracuse Journal, February 9
50 Frozen to Death in Icy Storm
By International News Service
Death and suffering rode on the icy wings of polar blasts today as almost the entire country was held in the grip of record-smashing subzero temperatures. At least 50 persons were frozen to death and scores were partially frozen or injured as the result of fires, accidents and devastation that followed in the wake of stinging winds. Families were driven into the cold, homeless sought shelter and food by the thousand and animals were frozen in their tracks as the Arctic blasts took their toll.

Weather forecasts held out little hope for immediate relief and in some places the worst was yet to come. In the Northwest, temperatures plunged to new depths of 50 and 60 degrees below zero. The temperature hovered around zero as far south as Arizona.

February 10: The cold wave breaks. More than 60 deaths are attributed to Arctic temperatures and the blizzard that gripped the northern half of the country for several days.

February 11: While the Midwest prepares for another assault of sub-zero cold, highway workers announce the rescue of 34 persons who had been marooned for three days in a rural schoolhouse near Morris, Illinois, about 40 miles southwest of Chicago.

Syracuse Journal, February 12
Ice Blockades Niagara Falls
NIAGARA FALLS (INS) — For the third time in history, the roar of the American Falls was silenced today. An ice blockade in the rapids from Goat Island to the inlet of the Hydraulic Canal, above the American Falls, left the great cataract a barren mountain of ice, with but a few desultory trickles of water.

In normal weather 5 million cubic feet of water pours over the falls every minute.

The last time water had ceased over the American Falls was in January 1926.

February 13: With thousands reported killed in earthquakes in China's bleak Kansu province, another disaster strikes the country. Major floods are reported threatening Shangtung province owing to jammed ice floes in the Yellow River.

Next: the story of a man who didn't profit from a similar experience a month earlier:

Syracuse Journal, February 16
The iceman repeateth
ONEIDA — When caught in a blinding snowstorm that descended about him while fishing through the ice in Oneida Lake, two miles off Sylvan Beach, Roscoe Hart, 70, veteran fisherman, was saved from probable death from exposure last night when four men, guided by compasses, beat their way through the storm and found the elderly man who had been missing for hours.

The rescue party comprised Charles Cook, Jay McCuen, Joe Zitto and Dick Markell, all of Sylvan Beach. They found Hart wandering aimlessly about the ice, benumbed by cold and on the verge of exhaustion.

It was almost impossible for the searchers to see a foot ahead of them because of the whirling snow and at times the force of the wind almost knocked them down. They knew that Hart went out at 5 a.m. and had been out all day when the gale struck.

Hart’s teeth were chattering and he was trembling from the cold and exposure as the men guided him back to shore. He was able to walk along with the help of a couple of others.

It was Hart’s second escape within a month on Oneida Lake ice. He was one of the party on a ice floe that broke loose and drifted to the north shore back in January. There were 16 men marooned on the ice at that time.

February 25: In England, the Great Western Railway's express train, The Irish Mail, is stranded for several hours between Fishguard and London's Paddington Station, blocked by snowdrifts many feet thick. A railway official says, "This is the first time we've ever lost an express train." Also temporarily lost in the fierce snowstorm are 40 children from Aberdare, Wales, in a motor coach, returning from a choir festival in Neyland, 70 miles away.

March 3: Japan is struck by an earthquake and tidal wave. The death toll is estimated at 1,600, with more than 10,000 homes destroyed.

March 11: A series of earthquakes leaves a trail of death and destruction in southern California. Hardest hit: the city of Long Beach where 87 are reported dead. In all, 144 persons die, 1,500 are injured, as 24 tremors shake the region in a 12-hour period. Over the next four days another 19 tremors are reported.

March 14: Tornadoes sweep Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas and Missouri. The death toll in Tennessee alone is 61.

Syracuse Journal, March 15
Attack of the tornadoes
By International News Service
Twisting funnels of death roared out of the Mississippi Valley last night, dipping with deadly fury into 30 towns of Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas and Missouri.

The tornado leaped into life in the Arkansas delta country, struck Reelfoot Lake and Lepanto, Arkansas, on the Mississippi River, jumped to Nashville, the Tennessee capital, and ravaged 20 towns in East Tennessee, blowing out in southern Kentucky.

One branch of the whirling cones of death branched into eastern Missouri, swooping to earth in the vicinity of Poplar Bluff.

Nine persons were killed in Nashville and 150 injured. The storm crushed the tenth floor of the Cotton States Life Insurance building there and demolished another three-story downtown office building. Windows of the state capitol were smashed.

Six persons were killed at Kingsport, eight at Pruden, three each at Harrogate and Oswego, two at Bellwood and one at Mill Point.

The tornado struck early last night, plunging the area into darkness as lighting facilities were crippled. It was preceded by a violent rain and lightning storm.

March 20: The Ohio River overflows, flooding parts of Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky and Indiana. The Mississippi River overflows the Delta Region. Before the water recedes, 72 people are killed, most of them in Mississippi.

March 29: Heavy rain triggers a landslide that wipes out the village of Tantaday, Peru, killing an estimated 1,000 people.

March 31: Tornadoes rip through eastern Texas, northern Louisiana and southern Arkansas, killing 70 people. A massive tornado hits southeastern Mississippi, killing 37 and injuring 170 in Jasper and Clarke counties.


April 1: As if tornadoes hadn't done enough damage, drenching rain plus effects of flooding along the Ohio River, threatens to spread the flood down the Mississippi River.

April 7: A storm in the northwest results in 20 deaths and leaves more than 14 fishing boats and 19 men unaccounted for off Gray's Harbor, Washington.

April 22: Snow continues to fall from Montana to New Mexico during the third day of the year's heaviest snowfall. Drifts are 20 feet deep in the Rocky Mountain region.

April 30: A Tornado sweeps 20 Texas farm houses from their foundations. It is the opening event of an incredible and disastrous series of tornadoes, with Tennessee being hit particularly hard. At least 27 tornadoes are reported in a seven-day period.


May 1: Minden, Louisiana, is hit by a tornado; 28 are killed, 400 injured.

May 3: The Vermilion River overflows, causing floods in Indiana and Illinois. Three people die. A tornado kills five people in Tulsa.

May 5: Twenty-one persons are killed, 200 injured, as a tornado sweeps through Bibb and Shelby Counties, Alabama. In South Carolina, 19 are killed, 100 injured, by tornadoes in Anderson and Belton.

May 9: The death toll in Kentucky is 36 after a tornado devastates Monroe County.

May 10: A midnight tornado cuts a path from Livingston to Byrdstown, wiping the tiny community of Beatty Swamps off the map. Thirty-five people are killed, 150 injured

May 22: One-inch hailstones hit the village of Ship Harbor, Nova Scotia, like machine-gun bullets, crashing through roof tops and breaking nearly every pane of glass in the village. Meanwhile, a tornado sets down in North Dakota, killing four children on one farm as it cuts across Hettinger and Grant counties.

May 23: A terrific windstorm sweeps a wide area east of the Rocky Mountains. Western Kansas and Nebraska receive the full force of the gale. At least 12 people are killed and lines of communication are blown down.

Syracuse Journal, May 29
A memorable river cruise
WASHINGTON (INS) — The presidential family was still talking about the severe electrical storm and wind squall the White House yacht Sequoia rode out Saturday night on the broad expanse of the Potomac River. The storm was the highlight of President Roosevelt’s weekend excursion.

“It was as bad a thunderstorm as I have ever seen,” said Captain Walter Vernon, naval aide to the President, who was aboard.

“It was so black you couldn’t see anything. It was worse than being in a thick fog. There was no danger, of course, The Sequoia is a slick craft. We were before the storm, so it wasn’t unduly rough.”

President Roosevelt, himself is a veteran yachtsman, and one of his guests was Rear Admiral Cary T. Grayson, but the elements gave the “landlubbers” aboard — including Secretary of the Treasury and Mrs. Woodin — quite a thrill.

The Sequoia had cruised about 40 miles south of Quantico, Virginia, when the storm hit. Dinner was being served, but the President and his guests deserted the table to go on deck and see what was going on.

Rain was coming down in sheets and everything had turned an unearthly black and the bow of the ship was indiscernible from midship Lightning flashed all about. The river at his point is several miles wide. By the time Blackstone Island was reached, the storm had subsided.


Syracuse Journal, May 29
Liner sinks in Lake Superior
HOUGHTON, Michigan (INS) — The passenger liner George M. Cox lay with her stern on the rocky bottom of Lake Superior today while 123 persons who were aboard her recovered from the effects of a night spent on the windswept reefs of Isle Royale.

No lives were lost, but six persons were reported injured when the 260-foot ship tore her hull on the treacherous reef and sank Saturday night. Among those reported hurt was George M. Cox, New Orleans, president of the Isle Royale Transit Company, owners of the vessel.

Captain George Johnson said the reconditioned craft, which had been christened only last Wednesday, plowed into the reef in a fog at a speed of 17 knots. “She began to list immediately at an angle of about 45 degrees,” he said. “In about four minutes her stern sank while her prow stuck up out of the water, supported buy the rocks.”

Only the calmness of the lake and the courage of the passengers and crew prevented heavy loss of life, said Captain Johnson. After a few moments of panic order was restored and the lifeboats lowered. All except the most seriously injured were transferred to the reef, near Rock of Ages lighthouses.

May 29: Fog sends two ships aground near the tiny island of Point Honda, about a 150 miles north of Los Angeles. The area is known as “the graveyard of the Pacific." The Japanese oil tanker, Nippon Maru, with a crew of 35, goes aground on Point Honda. Later, about 50 miles away off Point Conception, the steamship Chehalis, a lumber schooner plying between Los Angeles and the Pacific Northwest, collides with the steamship J. D. Stetson and goes aground with 15 men on board. The Stetson escapes the rocks.

Syracuse American, June 4
NAPLES, Italy (INS) — Mount Vesuvius burst into a new and violent eruption today and as an abundant flow of lava began pouring from a new opening, residents of the villages of Tersigno and Bosco Tercase prepared to flee.

June 7: A heat wave grips most of the United States. Temperature hits 106 in Iowa. More than 80 deaths are attributed to the heat before cooler weather arrives several days later.

Syracuse American, June 11
Two sisters from Port Leyden, New York, Mrs. Anna Dougall Tombley, 21, and Miss Laurie Dougall, 15, trying to beat a surprising early-June heat wave, went swimming in the Black River and drowned.

Two years ago their mother committed suicide by drowning herself in the same river. Their father then hanged himself.

June 26: An earthquake south of Benkolelen, Sumatra, kills 67 persons.

June 28: After a short break, the heat returns to Central New York as the temperature soars into the 90s, and in the afternoon a new all-time record for the month of June is set when the mercury stops just short of 96 degrees.

Syracuse Journal, June 28
Please, turn down the heat
By International News Service
Under the impetus of a scorching sun, temperatures over most of the country rose into the 90s this morning, promising to set heat records in several areas before sunset.

Western Kansas wheat field shriveled. Torrid southwest winds swept many points and had blown away top soil, leaving farms ruined.

Sporadic showers brought small relief to northwest Missouri and northeast Kansas overnight, but they were of little value to crops.

Iowa prepared to pay dearly for its one-day respite from the severe heat. Thundershowers broke the severe drought in southwestern Iowa late yesterday, assuming cloudburst proportions at Shenandoah, where three inches of rain fell.

Other parts of the state remained parched; the weekly United States crop report for Iowa showed great damage to oats, barley, spring wheat, some winter wheat and flax. In neighboring Nebraska, private estimates of the wheat harvest anticipate only 20 million bushels, compared with an average yield of 63 million.

June 29: It is reported the heat wave blanketing most of the country has claimed 25 lives in six states — Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Kentucky and Indiana. Temperatures range from the low 90s to just over 100.

July 1: A localized storm hits the Utica, New York, area, destroying crops, downing 14 miles of telephone and telegraph wire and causing a freak railroad accident. The storm tears an ice house loose from its foundation and blows it onto the tracks of the Delaware and Lackawanna Railroad. A train carrying 75 passengers hits the wreckage, but no one is injured.

July 8: A cloudburst over Colorado causes a flood that sweeps through the towns of Idledale and Morison, causing an estimated 20 deaths. A hurricane hits northern Mexico; many are killed.

July 31: Another heat wave grips the East. Eight deaths are attributed to scorching temperatures.


August 3: Flood water roars down Cherry Creek into the heart of Denver. Several houses in the lowlands on the outskirts of the city are swept away, along with trees and telephone poles. The raging flood comes in the wake of 12 hours drenching rain and a cloudburst that causes the collapse of Castlewood Dam, a huge irrigation reservoir at the headwaters of Cherry Creek, 25 miles southeast of Denver.

August 15: A three-day heat wave today causes nine deaths in Pacific Coast states. Mercury readings in excess of 100 are common in California, Nevada, Idaho, Washington, Oregon and Arizona. A freak thunderstorm in the Imperial Valley near the Mexican border drops the temperature to 93 degrees from a record high of 118. The storm uproots trees and unroofs houses. And rain in China floods the Yellow River, inundating the Shantung, Hopei and Hunan provinces. More than 150,000 people are driven from their homes, several thousands are reported drowned.

August 16: A death list approaching 100 is feared as the result of a violent storm which sweeps Jamaica. Torrential rains cause widespread floods and destruction. In Mexico City, an earthquake rattles buildings, causing panic, but not inflicting much damage.

August 21: Between 15 and 40 persons are missing after 350 men, women and children and more than 40 battered boats are rescued from the sea, following the hurricane-like storm which strikes the New Jersey coast.

August 24: The storm which had lashed the North Atlantic seaboard for three days continues. With 20 known dead and thousands homeless, tidewater Virginia, Maryland and southern Delaware bear the brunt of the damage. The wind, reaching a maximum of 70 miles an hour, brings with it flooding rains, the worst in the last 50 years.

Syracuse Journal, August 25
Storm strands steamer passengers

Threat of devastating floods confronted the eastern seaboard today as the storm which pounded coastal regions from Connecticut to the Carolinas for the last five days swept toward the St. Lawrence Valley, its wake a welter of death and destruction.

The 40 passengers stormbound on the steamer City of Norfolk in Pokomoke Sound for the past 72 hours were removed from the vessel early today and started for Norfolk on the tug Peerless.

The Peerless and the tug Restless raced to the aid of the vessel, which was run aground by her skipper in escaping the storm which swept the Virginia capes. The vessel was discovered by Navy aviators as they flew over the storm strewn sections of the eastern shore. None of the passengers was injured.

(Also damaged by 1933's heavy rains were railroad bridges,
some of which collapsed under the weight of trains.)
August 28: The first blizzard of the season hits Colorado and ties up traffic on the famous Estes Park-to-Grand Lake highway, which crosses the continental divide at an altitude of more than 12,000 feet.

September 1: At least 25 persons are killed in a cyclonic storm that strikes Havana and the northern coast of Cuba.

September 5: The hurricane which swept across the Florida peninsula, spreading ruin in the citrus fruit belt, is reported menacing the gulf coast again early today. Six persons are reported killed as the storm strikes the region around Brooksville. It is estimated 15 percent of the Citrus Ridge Company’s fruit crop is laid waste by the storm.

September 6: Deaths in Texas attributed to the hurricane total 32 — twenty persons in Brownsville, ten at Harlingen and two at Rio Hondo. Approximately 1,500 persons are injured.

Syracuse Journal, September 16
Hurricane Lashes Atlantic Coast
International News Service
A tropical hurricane, the third to batter the eastern seaboard within a month, lashed the coast from the Virginia Capes to northern New England today.

Offshoot of a storm that took 32 lives in Tampico, Mexico, and then sped northward, the gale ripped through Norfolk, Virginia, and surrounding territory, killing at least two persons, demolishing homes, inundating towns and cutting two municipalities — Morehead City and Beaufort, North Carolina — off from communication with the world.

Mariners heeded full storm warnings displayed along the coast, which was battered by huge waves. New Yorkers, sodden from 48 hours of steady rain, were warned to expect a heavy downpour over the weekend.

Coast Guard craft along the New England seaboard are searching for the 40-foot ketch, Ilvacore, out of Marblehead, Massachusetts, with a couple aboard. The coastal steamer Beckwith of Reedsville, Virginia, is in distress off the Virginia Capes — Charles and Henry — that define the entrance to Chesapeake Bay.

The hurricane was responsible for heavy rains over a wide are in the northeast. In Pennsylvania, more than 100 coal miners were trapped by flood waters in Ashley, while another group of workers were reported trapped at the Truesdale mine. Men who emerged from the mines reported they waded in water up to their chests to reach the surface.

Highways were flooded, trains stalled and several people rescued from rising waters in the eastern Pennsylvania lowlands. Most of the miners managed to escape, but there were four deaths. However, the hurricane was held responsible for 42 deaths in other parts of the East.

September 16: A mounting death toll which may reach 50 or more is revealed as reports come in from the cyclone-devastated regions in the vicinity of Tampico. So far there are 32 known dead at Tampico and more than 1,000 persons made homeless.

September 18: Storm-tossed and battered, the ocean liner Morro Castle docks in New York City, two days behind schedule on its trip from Havana. Of the 140 passengers and 200 crew members, more than 70 suffer cuts and bruises during the hurricane which sweeps away the vessel's radio masts. (A year later, en route from Havana to New York, the Morro Castle catches fire and burns, killing 137 passengers and crew members. The ship eventually beaches itself near Asbury Park, New Jersey.).

September 25: Fifty persons are drowned when floods inundate the Yugoslavian village of Stuge. And in Mexico, Vera Cruz and other parts of Mexico are badly damaged by a hurricane. Winds up to 120 miles an hour are reported.

September 26: Eight persons are killed and a score injured in a series of earthquakes which rock Central Italy. The tremor is most severe in the region of Sulmona and Avezzano, between Rome and the Adriatic Sea, an area devastated in an historic quake 20 years ago. (A day later the death toll is at least 19 persons.)


October 5: Havana is grazed by an 82-mile-an-hour hurricane that causes slight injuries to 20 persons and sinks small boats in the harbor. The storm interrupts Cuba's prolonged uprising, but looting is widespread. Soldiers kills two of the looters, but one trooper and one sailor are killed by snipers.

Eleven days later, in British Columbia, things became uncomfortably Biblical:

Syracuse Journal, October 16
ROCK CREEK, British Columbia — It rained beetles here yesterday. The downpour of tiny brown insects lasted intermittently for three hours. The beetles had wings, but seemed unable to use them.

Then followed a short break, north of the equator, as autumn gave way to an impatient winter:

Syracuse Journal, November 15
Blizzard proves deadly
Sweeping up out of the icy Atlantic, a raging, howling blizzard tore across the northeastern section of the United States today, leaving death, destruction and badly crippled communication lines in its wake.

Four deaths were reported in the Buffalo area, three more in Detroit, and from scattered points along the northern seaboard came more stories of missing ships, abandoned vessels and other probable loss of life.

The storm was particularly severe in the Great Lakes section, where a 40-mile wind was accompanied by a heavy fall of snow. Temperatures in some parts of this district dropped to 13 below zero.

November 16: The Syracuse area is covered by a nine-inch snowfall and the temperature drops to six degrees, a new-all time low temperature for the month of November. It is even colder a west of the city; people near the airport in Amboy claim their thermometers registered 12 degrees below zero. At Syracuse University, freshmen are recruited to help clear Archbold Stadium of snow for the November 18 football game against arch-rival Colgate.

November 22: Rescue parties press northward through 15 miles of snowdrifts near Newberry, Michigan, to rescue 38 deer hunters, one of them a woman, who have been snowbound in their camps for more than a week.


December 1: In San Salvador comes a report of a lava stream more than two miles wide flowing from the volcano Isalco today, engulfing farms. Ashes rain from the crater on neighboring towns. Residents in the district are terrorized as the sky is darkened by ashes and smoke. Sitkin volcano in the Aleutian island group also is reported erupting.

Meanwhile, Southern California experiences a taste of winter weather. In Glendale the temperature drops to 34 degrees and there is a light blanket of frost.

December 3: From Hawaii comes a report that fishermen fled their homes at the foot of Mauna Loa, 14,000-foot volcanic crater last night as the giant volcano burst into activity after seven years of silence. An earthquake, which shook the entire island of Hawaii, south of here, preceded the volcanic activity.

Milwaukee Journal, December 14
High winds churn English channel
LONDON, England — Trawlers, freighters and great ocean liners today fought through the roughest seas and highest winds of years in the English channel and North Sea.

On land, at least five persons perished from cold; several roads were made impassable by ice and snow.

Waves washed up four bodies on the Suffolk coast and their identification by coast guardsmen showed that the British steamer Culmore of 400 tons had gone down yesterday, apparently with its full crew of nine men.

Life savers tried to reach the ship before it sank, but when they arrived at the reported position it had disappeared.

As the storm progressed, many ships fled to port and the English Channel services were canceled after vain efforts to re-route traffic by safer paths.

London experienced the coldest morning of the winter with a temperature of 27 degrees as icy winds from Germany and Russia swept the country and bitter weather continued over most of the continent.

(Note in the above story the reference to "icy winds from Germany and Russia," as though those two countries were somehow to blame, pretty much like United States weather reporters are always quick to mention how often cold fronts come down from Canada.)

Syracuse Journal, December 23
Rain, rain go away
SEATTLE (INS) — With the death toll at nine and 5,000 homeless, flood waters in the Pacific Northwest grew more menacing today and rain continued to fall.

Four hundred feet of the main line of the Northern Pacific Railway track north of Woodland, Washington, were swept away by the raging overflow of the Lewis River. Seven thousand acres of land were inundated.

The storm waters are the most dangerous ever experienced in the Pacific Northwest.

Meanwhile, near Drexel, Montana, the Olympian, the Milwaukee passenger train, was marooned by washouts, with indications it would be four or five days before the train is able to move. With plenty of food on hand, passengers remained in good spirits, for the time being.

December 26: Torrential rain causes a muddy flood in the Philippine city of Irosin where 10 persons are killed and more than 500 made homeless. At first it is believed nearby Mount Bulasan has erupted, but it turns out the rain has washed away lava deposited in previous volcanic eruptions.

December 27: A severe snowstorm, which costs at least 30 lives, hits much of the country. Eight lives are lost in Lake Michigan as two fishing tugs sink in the storm-swept waters. Two people die in Chicago, bringing that city’s cold wave death list up to six. A crew of five on the fishing schooner Monica Hartery are washed to their deaths off southern Newfoundland’s coast. Nine persons die in New England and two deaths in New York are attributed to the storm.

Syracuse Journal, December 29
Temperatures hit record lows
The bottom seemed to drop out of the thermometer today when the entire East found itself in the icy grip of a record cold wave.

Central New York was the center of the cold belt with temperatures varying from 24 degrees below zero, a record low for Syracuse, to 40 degrees below and slightly lower at some unofficial thermometers in nearby villages.

Watertown and Utica both hit 26 below zero, which was mild by comparison to readings in Canada. In Quebec, for example, it was 45 below.

Current residents of rain-starved Southern California probably will not believe that the following actually happened:

December 31: A New Year's Eve rainstorm drops eight to 12 inches of water on various parts of Los Angeles County. As if 1933 weren't bad enough, the new year begins with a flood in Southern California which by January 3 will have taken 36 lives, with another 52 persons reported missing.